Six cities and towns have been named finalists for this year’s Stellar Communities program. The statewide initiative involves funding and resources for projects designed to improve quality of life in smaller Hoosier communities.
The state says Stellar Communities helps with "transformative" efforts to plan, leverage existing assets, foster regional investments and stimulate long-term growth. It is a collaboration financially supported by the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, Office of Community and Rural Affairs and Indiana Department of Transportation through state and federal sources. The state says a total of 11 agencies will provide technical skills and expertise for the program.
Lieutenant Governor Eric Holcomb is set to visit each finalist in the coming months and says "cities and towns across Indiana continue to benefit from a strong business climate that makes them attractive places to live, work, and play, and the Stellar Communities Designation Program remains an important catalyst fostering local economic growth."
The finalists are broken down based on size. Division 1 communities have populations between 6,000 and 50,000 and Division 2 finalists have 5,999 or fewer residents. The 2016 finalists are:
- City of Rushville
- City of Shelbyville
- City of Warsaw
- Town of Corydon
- Town of Culver
- City of Union City
Ten communities applied for the program. Finalists will receive a planning grant to launch or bolster strategic plans, projects and potential funding partnerships. One winner from each division will be announced in the summer.
Past winners are:
2011 – North Vernon and Greencastle
2012 – Princeton and Delphi
2013 – Richmond and Bedford
2014 – Huntingburg and Wabash
2015 – Crawfordsville and North Liberty
You can find out more about the program by clicking here.